The Flames teeter on the brink of more humiliation when facing Bafana Bafana in today’s Cosafa Plate category semi-final at Royal Bafokeng Sports Palace in South Africa.
The Flames join in the category other losing quarter-finalists Ghana and Zambia, who also floundered to surprise package Madagascar and Namibia respectively, on Sunday and Monday at Moruleng Stadium.
The Flames, with Lucky Malata and Limbikani Mzava scoring past own goalkeeper McDonald Harawa on the 10th and 90th minute to leave Mozambique off the hook and lose 5-4 in post-match penalties, have an even tough task containing Bafana Bafana whose pride is as battered.
John Banda played his lungs out against Mozambique, creating both goals through a penalty and corner-kick.
“We are depleted. We were so close and yet so far away. Against Bafana Bafana, we will try our best to win. We have to win at all cost,” Banda said yesterday.
South Africa lost 5-4 on post-match penalties to ultra-defensive Botswana who take on Mozambique in the semi-final that also pairs Madagascar against Namibia tomorrow.
Despite the loss, Bafana Bafana were by far a better team against the Zebras. Tlou Segolela troubled and teased Botswana defence on the left wing. Malawi’s defence face a torrid time.
Down the left back, South Africa have exciting Marc Van Heerden whose crosses, free-kicks and corner-kicks had Botswana goalkeeper Kabelo Dambe working hard time.
Bafana Bafana coach Shakes Mashaba felt they controlled the Botswana game and expects a better showing against Malawi. Malawi lost 2-1 to South Africa in a practice match played last week when Gerald Phiri netted the consolation.
“We need to work on our finishing. We lacked the cutting edge upfront,” Mashaba told the media.
Angola beat Malawi in the semi-final of 2013 Cosafa plate game played in Zambia.